Looking up the Bowery in 1920 (from LIFE images)
Fifty-four years ago today, Manhattan passengers said goodbye a true vestige of 19th century New York -- the elevated railroad.
The last ride on the Third Avenue El was taken on May 12, 1955. The line stretched up almost the entire length of Manhattan (from Chatham Square, just below Canal Street) all the way up to East 149th Street in the Bronx.
How did Manhattan look from the vantage point of an elevated train system in the 1950s? Check out this vintage short from 1950, letting the camera roll through a typical ride on the Third Avenue during a sunny day: